Quick Review: Dunlop Biomimetic F5.0 Tour

Recently, I raved about the potential of the Donnay Formula 100 racquet becoming a new  favorite of mine (but I also noted having issues with the depth on my backhand).  Move over Donnay, the Dunlop Biomimetric F5.0 Tour has quickly moved into that second spot behind my Babolat Pure Drive GT.

Dunlop Biomimetic F5.0 Tour

I strung up the F5.0 Tour with some Black Shark at 60 pounds (yes, I like tight poly strings!) and had an absolute blast hitting with this racquet.  I found I could swing freely and had great access to spin and power.  Balls that I thought I was missing by a couple inches were landing in.  And my backhand was not a problem as I could swing fast and free through my backhand.  I could control the ball and play consistent or rip the ball and flatten out or even access some heavy spin for defense.

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Get your poly on!

Polyester strings have become the popular choice on both the ATP and WTA tours. In fact, at the recent combined ATP-WTA tour event in Rome, of 138 men’s and women’s players, 135 of them were either using a full set of polyester or were using it in a hybrid setup with a softer string. Only three players were using a full set of natural gut, which was the popular choice in the days of McEnroe and Connors. So, what are polyester strings? Why are they popular? Will they work for you?

Polyester strings are typically “monofilament” (made from a single, solid strand of material) as opposed to natural gut or “multifilament” strings that are composed of multiple strands woven together. The single strand is often made of polyester blended with some other substances that can affect the playability of the string in a variety of ways. This monofilament design lends itself to very stiff strings, which means more control and durability, but less power and comfort. They have more of a “dead” feel to them, making it hard to generate power and often being the cause of arm problems in tennis players. So why have they become so popular?

Polyfibre TCS is one of the softest, most comfortable polys around!

As racquet technology has improved, players are able to take longer, faster swings at the ball, and the collision between racquet and ball has become increasingly violent. The traditional natural gut strings were providing too much power and not enough control for these large swings, not to mention not giving the pros enough durability. Personally, I could go through a full set of natural gut within a couple of hours. So players began experimenting with polyester strings.

What people found was that the polyester strings were providing much more control for the longer, faster strokes. Since players didn’t have to worry about controlling the stroke themselves (due to the polyester being much less powerful), they could exert even more effort into the swing, generating tremendous racquet speed. With the added racquet speed, players were able to gain tons of spin. With increased spin and control, you could hit EVEN HARDER while remaining confident that the ball would stay in play. Furthermore, the string was much more durable, which is always a welcomed bonus.

Luxilon ALU Power Big Banger is one of the most popular strings on tour!

As more and more players caught on, the popularity of polyester strings took off on the pro tour. Now, they’ve taken over the tour, and like I previously stated, 98% of the players in Rome are using some type of polyester setup in their racquets. The way the modern game has evolved, it has become almost a necessity to use “polys” for their added control, access to spin and durability. Most players would be unable to compete on the tour without them.

Volkl Cyclone is a great bang for your buck!

What about you? Since polys are so popular on the professional level, does this mean that we would recommend them to everyone? Well, not necessarily. First of all, since they are very stiff, they tend to create a lot of shock at contact that gets transferred into the hand and arm. This can cause arm problems in people who are susceptible. If you are someone who tends you have arm problems and you still want to try polyesters, I would suggest using a “hybrid” setup, by mixing the polyester with a softer multifilament or natural gut string. This will help you get the feel for the polyester and see if you like it, while reducing the harsh impact on your arm. Secondly, because of the stiffness, it is difficult to generate power with the polyester strings. You must have long, fast strokes, otherwise the ball won’t go anywhere when you hit it. If you have shorter, slower strokes, you might want the comfort, power and feel of a natural gut or multifilament instead.

Just because polyesters are popular on the pro tour doesn’t mean that they are right for everyone. But if you’re an intermediate to advanced level player with long, fast strokes looking for a little more durability and control out of your strings, then give them a try! Remember, if you’ve got a history of arm problems, just mix the polyester with a softer natural gut or multifilament, giving you that controlled feel and added durability but reducing some of the harshness on your arm. Take those big cuts at the ball without fear of your shots sailing long, and you’ll be hitting harder and heavier in no time!

Thanks for reading!

Andy G.

Strings: Enjoy the Rainbow

I wanted to start out this week with a bit of a bang. Don’t get me wrong, I know we normally pick strings based on spin potential, power, durability, etc, but this time I wanted to show a bit of color. I picked a range of strings that we offer in multiple colors. These will not only brighten things up but may improve your game, too. Let’s admit it, having some color in your racquet looks cool, and these strings play great, too. Check out how bright you can make your tennis:
Solinco Outlast 16

Solinco Outlast 16

Solinco Outlast 16
Color:
RED
Length: 40′ set, 660′ reel

A medium to stiff co-poly that offers exceptional control, spin and bite, Outlast allows you to really rip the ball and keep it in the court. It has good durability. Outlast is great on its own or as part of a hybrid, as it would add durability and control to a string combo. It’s perfect for the powerful all court player looking to beef up control from the baseline and net. Comes in 16g, 17g.

Kirschbaum Pro Line X 16

Kirschbaum Pro Line X
Color:
ORANGE
Length: 40′ set, 660′ reel

(A favorite of mine!) It is a firm and predictable co-polyester that performs well on big swings. Power players will have no problem manipulating depth and trajectory. Kirschbaum pre-stretches this one to preserve tension and playability. Spin comes very easily. Comes in 16g, 17g.

Dunlop Synthetic S-Gut 16

Dunlop Synthetic S-Gut 16
Color:
YELLOW
Length: 40′ set, 660′ reel

This economical synthetic gut has a monofilament core with elastic twisted monofilament outer wraps. Offers a nice blend of attributes from power to comfort to durability. Comes in 16g, 17g.

Prince Beast XP 16

Prince Beast XP 16
Color:
GREEN
Length: 40′ set, 660′ reel

The world’s first thermo-poly string. Designed to offer improved tension maintenance, precision and consistency. This monofilament co-polyester provides excellent access to spin, a crisp response and good durability. Comes in 15Lg, 16g, 17g.

Kirschbaum Pro Line Evolution 17

Kirschbaum Pro Line Evolution 17
Color:
BLUE
Length: 40′ set, 660′ reel

This is a softer feeling polyester string that offers great ball pocketing and access to spin. Because the string is pre-stretched, it maintains tension better than other more traditional polyesters. Similar to that of the Pro Line II, this string is 10 percent lighter, providing more power and spin. Comes in 17g.

Babolat XCel 16 Blue

Babolat XCel 16 Blue
Color:
DARK BLUE
Length: 40′ set, 660′ reel

This is a pillowy multifilament loaded with comfort and touch. The increased dwell time provides excellent control. Easily one of the best multis available. This is great in a full bed or to soften up a hybrid. It offers a good balance between control and power. Comes in 16g.

Weiss CANNON 6 Star Supercharged 16

Weiss CANNON 6 Star Supercharged
Color:
PURPLE
Length: 40′ set, 660′ reel

This unique Weiss CANNON string blends monofilaments and multifilaments by twisting the fibers together. We found 6Star Supercharged to offer solid comfort and power with better access to spin than a usual multifilament string. Comes in 16g.

Check out our string finder to see what strings we have available, and search through them within different categories. Put some color in your life, and improve your tennis with some game changing string.
Siobhan